CHARLESTON, W.Va. — No. 3 Charleston Catholic held second-seeded Notre Dame to just two field goals in the fourth quarter and advanced to its ninth state title game in 10 years with a 50-38 victory in the Class A semifinals.
Garrett McCarty led the fourth-quarter charge by scoring 12 of his game-high 17 points. The win avenged Catholic’s 60-55 loss earlier this season at Notre Dame.
“We knew that Notre Dame was going to have some spurts in them—they’re too talented not to,” Charleston Catholic coach Bill McClanahan said. “We were able to switch up defenses in fourth quarter and made our own little run.”
Notre Dame (21-5) made an 8-0 run at the end of the third quarter—capped by Jarrod West Jr.’s buzzer-beater—to lead 33-31. But that’s when the shooting turned cold as Notre Dame mustered just one field goal in the last seven minutes, a 3-pointer by Phil Chafin.
“When coach called that 2-2-1 we were successful with it,” McCarty said. “I’m used to it and I knew where the ball was suppose to go and we anticipated it and got some steals.”
Catholic (21-6) switched to their half-court trap like they did against Valley (F) in the quarterfinals. They had the same success as they forced into five turnovers in the fourth quarter.
“We switched to our 2-2-1 trap. These guys understand it and are athletic enough to be in the right place,” McClanahan said. “We’re smart enough to make good decisions, which led to layups, which led to the lead.”
Charleston Catholic had three players in double figures led by McCarty, who also had five assists and three steals. Patrick Hurlihy finished with 13 points, while Nick George narrowly missed a double-double with 10 points and nine boards.
Notre Dame was led by Cal Cistaro’s 10 points and game-high 12 rebounds. Chris Petrucci added six points, while West Jr. finished with just five on 2-of-10 shooting.
“We finally got into our tempo in the third quarter and forced a few turnovers,” Notre Dame coach Jarrod West said. “We actually took the lead, but their two-minute spurt (in the fourth) was the key to the game.
“I don’t think we executed well against their zone defense. We didn’t do a very good job of getting into their seams, we settled for a lot of 3-point shots.”
Charleston Catholic awaits the winner of the Clay Battelle- Wheeling Central game in the Class A state tile game on Saturday at 2:30 p.m.